Struggling with your mental health? Here’s a list of support groups that can help

For World Mental Health Day, we've curated a list of support groups and helpline numbers working on a range of mental health issues

In 2020, the World Health Organisation (WHO) found that roughly 7.5 per cent Indians suffer from some form of a mental disorder, and predicted that by the end of 2021, close to 20 percent of Indians will suffer from mental health illnesses. With a shortage of mental health professionals, a culture of denial and hesitation, a majority that cannot afford professional help, these statistics confirm that there is a desperate need for informed discourse around mental health and the systems that affect it. 


Read more: Mental health helpline received 72,000 calls in a year, thanks to the pandemic


Below is a curated list of free support groups and helpline numbers that can offer professional care or connect you with a community of people navigating similar challenges.

WeSurvive

We Survive is a support group for adult survivors of child sexual abuse. They conduct weekly meetings online, for free, and accept participants via email.

Contact: 9820492036 or omodworkshops@gmail.com

Aasra

Aasra is a crisis intervention centre for those who are suicidal and/or emotionally distressed, based out of Navi Mumbai. 

Find more information here. Contact: Johnson Thomas on 9820466726

Let’s Discuss the Meh

Let’s Discuss The Meh is a safe space for those struggling with emotional distress. Before this, they were a support group for depression specifically. They hold meetings every week and are free.

Maitri

Maitri is a Mumbai-based support group for those suffering from a mental illness, and their families. For over a decade, they’ve worked with patients living with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, and organise weekend meetings.

Contact: Ms. Samrin Shaikh: (022) 2683 8895,  Harish Shetty: (022) 2683 8895 / 26840720

All Sorts of Queer

ASQ is a peer-to-peer support group for anyone identifying as LBT (not cisgender). They accept participants via email and hold meetings on the last Saturday and second Wednesday of every month.


Read more: Labelled, bullied, humiliated: What LGBT students in our schools go through


The Village

The Village is an online support group for all single parents who are raising children independently. They meet every month, and there is a direct sign-up form available on their website.  

Umang

Umang is a support group for lesbian and bisexual women and trans persons (LBT). It is a free group that accepts participants via email.

More info here. Contact: 9930095856, info@humsafar.org

the lesbian, gay and trans pride flag
Representative image | Photo: WikiCommons

Dilaasa

Dilaasa is a support group that has been organised especially for family members of those living with schizophrenia, or any other mental illness. They organise regular meetings (mainly over the weekend) at the Masina Hospital in Byculla.

Contact: 9820198220

Wansa

Wansa is a platform for Kashmiri women and their experiences with living in a conflict region. They hold meetings weekly and there is a direct sign up form available on their website.

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